Jeff Wood
Urban Reads

Lyft Wants Out of the Bike Share Business

All the city news you can use.

By - Jul 29th, 2023 11:18 am
A row of CitiBikes. Photo by Tdorante10, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

A row of CitiBikes. Photo by Tdorante10, (CC BY-SA 4.0), via Wikimedia Commons

Every day at The Overhead Wire we sort through over 1,500 news items about cities and share the best ones with our email list. At the end of the week, we take some of the most popular stories and share them with Urban Milwaukee readers. They are national (or international) links, sometimes entertaining and sometimes absurd, but hopefully useful.

Amtrak’s ridership vs coverage problem: Jarrett Walker writes that Amtrak’s policy rhetoric is the perfect example of a discussion he often has about transit systems on the topic of coverage versus ridership. To cover the entire country, the system would have to spread itself thin to serve everyone while focusing on ridership would mean more concentrations of service to focus on getting higher ridership. The two can’t exist at the same time even when lawmakers want service for everyone and profitability. (Jarrett Walker | Human Transit)

Lyft wants out of bike share: Lyft’s CEO has stated that he wants more money from bike share cities or wants to be rid of the networks the company bought when they acquired Motivate. Ultimately the need for profitability over providing access is leading the move and Lyft’s promises of being friends with active transportation are long gone as he pondered whether they did a good enough job sucking bike share riders into their ride hail system. (Aaron Gordon | Motherboard)

Predictable city branding: Cities and companies in them are claiming uniqueness while all turning into the same thing writes David A. Banks. His term for this convergence is the third level of city marketing and economic development he calls the City Authentic after the City Beautiful and City Efficient movements. As places that create and test new culture disappear because of algorithmic advertising, cities will converge in sameness until everything is commodified. (David A Banks | Dezeen)

Is housing changing the marriage market? In high cost cities, dating and the housing market are becoming intertwined. Many younger people say they would move in faster with someone if it meant saving money on rent, and housing often enters the minds of people as they are choosing potential partners, even early on in the dating process. The last time the ratio of housing prices to salaries was this high was in the mid 19th century. (Barbara Speed | The Guardian)

Sewers can’t handle storms: A series of new reports by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) share that many sewer systems around the country aren’t able to handle extreme rainfall events that are made possible by climate change. The result might be more instances like Hurricane Ida which flooded basements in New York and New Jersey. Increasing the capacity of these drainage systems may take decades and billions of dollars before they are able to suitably drain water. (Thomas Frank | Scientific American)

Quote of the Week

There’s a larger play than just residential for existing building stock, and that is going to balance out the ecosystem that we need to have neighborhoods that can thrive.

Sheryl Schulze, a principal at architecture and planning firm Gensler in Dwell explaining the feasibility of turning offices into housing.

This week on the podcast, we’re joined by Mike Warren, senior vice president at WSP, who chats with us about road user charging including how the discussion has changed over the last decade and the idea of treating roads as a utility by paying for driving by the mile.

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Categories: Urban Reads

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